Stay Warm at Work

If your office is freezing, it can be miserable trying to get work done. Your first line of defense against the cold is what you wear. You can also change up a few things around you to warm yourself up. In addition, you can employ gadgets to help keep yourself warm in the office.


Layering for Warmth

  1. Add a scarf. A scarf around your neck is a good way to gain some warmth. It helps add heat to your body, namely your neck and back. Plus, you can choose a high-end scarf to still look professional. Try keeping one in your desk to take out as needed.[1]
  2. Try a wrap. Another option for the office is a wrap that you can use around the top half of your body. If you pick one in a nice material (such as silk or cashmere), it will still look professional as it keeps you warm.[2]
    • If you pick a wrap made from a thin, warm material, you can easily keep it neatly folded in your desk.
  3. Use cold-weather gear. Athletic cold-weather gear is made to fit close to the skin. In fact, most of the time, it will work under work clothes. Add a layer or two underneath your regular clothes to stay warm at work.[3]
    • For instance, you could wear thin jogger's leggings made from polypropylene or capilene under your work pants or a long-sleeved shirt made from the same material under a dress shirt.[4]
    • You can also try long underwear in silk.[1]
  4. Drape on a long cardigan. A cardigan can help keep you warm, but it only helps your top half. However, if you choose a long cardigan, you'll keep more of yourself warm. In fact, you can keep a long cardigan at work specifically for this purpose.[1]
  5. Keep your feet warm. You may need to switch to more sensible shoes to help keep your feet warm. When you do, you can add a pair of wool socks, which will keep your feet nice and toasty in the cold office.[5]
  6. Upgrade your fabrics. Cotton or polyester are common fabrics for professional clothes and sweaters. However, if you want more warmth out of your fabrics, choose wool or cashmere, which will insulate you more efficiently.[1]

Getting Warm by Changing Your Habits

  1. Let the sun in. If possible, open the blinds to let in more light. The more sunlight you let in, the warmer your office will be. However, if sunlight doesn't stream in, opening the blinds may make your office colder, so only open them when the sun is on your side of the building.[6]
  2. Move as much as you can. Obviously, if you're working a desk job, you can't be doing jumping jacks all day. However, taking periodic breaks to walk around the office can keep your blood pumping. While you're sitting at your desk, try lifting your legs up and down to keep moving.[1]
  3. Get a warm cup of something. While warm beverages don't actually warm your core temperature (which is a good thing), they can make you feel warmer. Plus, they can keep your hands warm while you work. Try a warm cup of tea or coffee.[7]

Using Gadgets

  1. Try a hot water bottle. One way to gain warmth is to use an old-fashioned hot water bottle. You simply fill the bottle with hot water and then place it to add warmth. You can put it behind your back, for instance.[1]
  2. Use a heating pad. Another option is to use a heating pad to warm up parts of your body. You'll need an outlet to plug it in, but then you can use it behind your back or underneath you to help stay warm.[1]
    • Never use a heating pad that looks worn or cracked. Burn marks are also a bad sign.
    • Be careful when using a heating pad, as it can burn your skin if left in one place for too long.[8]
  3. Use bigger headphones. Ear bud headphones may be unobtrusive, but they do nothing to keep you warm. Instead, opt for the bigger headphones that cover your whole ear. They'll add warmth and provide great sound quality.[1]
  4. Add a space heater. If your workplace allows it, you can try using a small space heater to help keep you warm. This solution works best if you have your own office, but if the heater is small enough, you may be able to make it work in a shared space.[1]
    • In fact, some companies make mini fan heaters just for this purpose.
  5. Try a heated chair mat. If layers aren't cutting it, add some warmth with a heated chair mat. These mats slip over the back of most office chairs and run down the back into the seat, much like a massage pad. They plug into a USB port, so you can simply plug it into your computer or a backup battery pack. Then it adds warmth to your back and legs.[1]

Sources and Citations

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